Mathieu Perreault is playing with Brouwer and Semin tonight - Marcus Johansson is a healthy scratch. Perreault needs to make the most of this opportunity.
Al Montoya is getting the start tonight for the Isles.
Leafs prospect Gregg McKegg had six assists last night (all primary assists).
Jose Bautista consulted twitter for some fantasy hockey updates. Apparently the Blue Jays have a fantasy hockey league. Pretty cool. Need to get him on the forums (unless he is there already…)
Final update for the Fantasy Guide is now ready for you to download. This update - Havlat, MacLean and more.
Finally some real hockey games to write about again! Lengthy ramblings today to kick off the Canadian long weekend the right way. Enjoy my fellow fantasy hockey fantastics, and my best wishes to you and yours this holiday weekend.
Martin Hanzal signed a five-year extension with the Coyotes. Five years with a cap hit of over $3 million. Hanzal always struck me as a player in a Staal type of situation (more skilled than a third liner, but playing there because of his strengths defensively). With zero depth at the center position, he’s going to see a ton of ice time in all situations this season.
One game, but Keith Ballard arguably played his best game as a Canuck against Pittsburgh on Thursday. A healthy body combined with a full summer of training will help his confidence a ton. He’s proven in the past he can produce, plus he hits and blocks a ton of shots.
A great read on the unconventional Mike Gillis from the Vancouver Sun. Take a few minutes and enjoy this one – hopefully more ‘outside the box’ thinkers start breaking through.
Caught a bit of the Jackets/Preds game. My thoughts:
Rinne looked like the stud he was last season. Enormous and athletic, giving the Jackets almost nothing to shoot at.
Craig Smith is ready for the NHL. A nice goal and a great game for the rookie.
Cal O’Reilly is getting an opportunity, and he better run with it. Over 16 minutes of ice time, some on the PP and some on the PK. He finished with one assist.
I made this point two weeks ago – Nashville had only one forward under 10 minutes of ice time (Geoffrion) and one forward over 18 minutes (Legwand). Balance – not a good word for poolies.
Ryan Suter played over five minutes on the PK, and still managed to score a goal and add a helper. Weber is the heart of the team but Suter may be the backbone.
Carter and Nash combined for four points and nine shots on goal. They were the two highest even strength shooters (most shots on goal at even strength) last season.
Oh, and Carter won 24 of 31 faceoffs taken. Not too shabby… (according to Aaron Portzline a new franchise record for faceoff wins).
David Savard was pointless in his NHL debut, seeing over four minutes of PP time.
Going to be a long season in Ottawa – several defensive mistakes last night. Michalek had a pair of goals and looked pretty good. Of course with him, health is always the concern.
Da Costa saw about a minute more of ice time than Zibanejad (although the latter had one helper compared to the former’s doughnut on the score sheet).
Cory Emmerton surprised many and made the Wings out of camp – in only eight minutes of ice time last night he had two points. He has spent a while in the AHL getting ready for the big league, something Detroit loves to do with its prospects.
Detroit’s defensive PP time – Lidstrom, White, Kronwall, and Kindl, in order. Kindl had an assist and three shots on goal. Like Emmerton, he’s spent quite a while down in Grand Rapids biding his time.
The Canes were torched 5-1, but Jeff Skinner looked great. Bigger and stronger than last year, and he was already such a powerful skater. He’s built a lot like Crosby – average height, close to 200 pounds and a very low center of gravity.
Ryan Murphy was a healthy scratch while Justin Faulk played.
Bergeron vs. Gilroy is going to be interesting to watch this season (fight for PP time). Bergeron saw more PP time (Gilroy had none) and had one point to zero last night – give him the very early season advantage. I like Gilroy more, though.
Carolina’s lines weren’t friendly to Zac Dalpe, who went from skating with Staal in the preseason to Anthony Stewart and Tim Brent on the fourth line. Staal centered Ruutu and Skinner.
Ryan Callahan had a goal and 11 shots on goal.
Although he played left wing for most of the game (correct me if wrong), Dubinsky still took 13 faceoffs (I didn’t watch the game, but I am guessing most on the PK).
Girardi saw over 30 minutes of ice time, and McDonagh saw close to 26. Without Staal, these two will be leaned on heavily. Can’t believe Montreal gave up McDonagh for Scott Gomez. That’s like trading in shares of a decent company for some of Enron AFTER the scandal broke. Gomez is a cap destroyer and Montreal is handcuffed for a few more years.
Anisimov saw almost five more minutes of ice time compared to Stepan (18 and 13, respectively).
Great debut for Mike Richards – two points, lots of ice time, and a few shots on goal. Very involved in the game. With Kesler, Zetterberg, and Malkin for the title of best second line center in the league.
Another game I didn’t watch, but heard that Buffalo looked really, really good. They have a mix of size, speed, skill, and two-way play. Lots of potential there.
Luke Adam had two points in less than 10 minutes of ice time. He’s going to force Buffalo into making a tough decision once Derek Roy is ready to return (edit: to the top line)
Ville Leino won six of the 13 faceoffs he took. He’ll have to keep his percentage close to 50 if he wants to stick at center (just like Pat Kane will in Chicago). Leino by all accounts looked very comfortable in the middle.
Fantasy performance of the day/night goes to Vanek – two goals, an assist, and nine shots on goal.
Some love for our Dobber Sports team:
Justin Goldman has just put the finishing touches on his NHL Goaltenders Style Guide. Justin, like everything he does, poured his heart and soul into this. He knows the position so well and I consistently consult him for fantasy and non-fantasy related goaltending matters. Guy’s the best, simply put.
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I used the Draft Guru for two of my leagues and will update you on the progress of those leagues this year.
15 Points to Consider, Turkey edition – out this Sunday.
Common sense, but I’ll say it anyway – don’t get too high or too low in the first few weeks. Sometimes the best decisions are the ones you DON’T make.
Michael Ryder looked great for Dallas last night. I’ll have more on the Chicago/Dallas game later this morning.
The Claude Giroux story – this kid is for real. My prediction of 88 points this season may end up being conservative…
Jagr’s 1600th point and a slick move from Giroux on Thursday night: